Parents share their experience with us and say:
"LJA is a great school - specifically to challenge girls to become thoughtful leaders. The small class sizes & extended class times allow for scholars to go deeper in their learning & put theory into practice."
"LJA feels more like family"
"Great school for middle school girls! Family and friends comment on Marianna's confidence, leadership, and her knowledge about important issues."
"So far so good, my student comes home happy talking about what happened in class and thinking more critically about her world"
"Fantastic. We recommend LJA to all of our friends..."
"LJA have an interest in the success of their students and they strive to shape the kids future academically and socially."
"It is giving her the support and academic challenge to explore herself & her place in the world"
"LJA provides a learning environment that empowers my daughter to be engaged in the world around her."
"INDISPENSABLE PRIVILEGED AMAZING UNFORGETTABLE OPPORTUNITIES..."
"If you want or need a school where your daughter becomes a well known member of a community, and not "just another student" - go check out LJA!"
Our 8th grade class to shares their thoughts on LJA:
“LJA made me think of learning in a different way. It helped tell me that learning is more than learning words or numbers, it’s a preparation for the future.”
“Teachers have taught me to be persistent and the teachers will always be my favorite.”
“When I first came to LJA I was quiet. I didn’t have as much confidence in myself. LJA helped me a lot because it made me step out of my shell. I made really great friends that supported me. My teachers were open and taught subjects that were sensitive.”
“LJA is a place where students get to be themselves.”
In what ways have you grown personally while at LJA? “I’ve been able to express myself more without worrying about other people’s opinions.”
“While at LJA, I learned to be more respectful to the adults and students.”
“LJA is a school full of smart people and cool subjects. I’ve learned a lot here. LJA has its flaws like every other school, but in all honesty, it has been my favorite school out of all three I’ve been to.”
“LJA has given me opportunities that I never could have gotten at my old school.”
“While at LJA I have become more confident, intelligent, aware of my capabilities, persistent, proud, friendly, and open to new ideas and people.”
“My confidence has gone up a lot and I feel comfortable with who I am.”
“At LJA I have grown to be more accepting of all people, of myself and my mistakes, and the world I live in.”
“While at LJA, I have grown into a confident scholar.”
“The teachers don’t just teach you, they inspire you.”
FROM LJA ALUM
Hello! It's Annalee!! So as you know I have made the transition from middle school to high school, yikes! I am now a little tiny (compared to theses giant seniors) freshman at Central high school. I wanted to write to you and tell you about high school and how much LJA has really changed my life.
Sophie, Ayanna, Bella, Mara and myself have been doing very well in our classes. We are trying to remember that now in high school we can no longer act crazy in the halls without people staring at us :) Our Laura Jeffrey family has really stuck together!
We all have accelerated classes and are doing fabulously! I am really enjoying my biology class and am looking forward to AP chemistry next year. I am also in choir with Ayanna and Sophie. Algebra 2 is a breeze and English is... lets just say not as fun as LASS. Well anyway enough with classes, lets get down to the real stuff.
As look back over my years at LJA, I realized that I have something that other girls have not had the chance to receive. I know what it means to be a girl in the world. I know my place as a strong woman and I don’t let anyone tell me different. I look around a I see girls who don’t really understand what it means to be a girl.
When people ask me what I learned at LJA, I tell them all the swag stuff we learned. I told a group of girls all about how we learned about how fairy tales do not represent women as they should. To my surprise, one girl asked what was wrong with fairy tales. I told her all about how the Little Mermaid changed herself for a man and how Snow White fell in love with a man she just met. She replied, “Oh yeah, I guess”. Cray Cray right?!?!?!? But then it hit me, she didn't have amazing LASS teachers to teach her these things. She probably didn't get to have an engineering class, or a gym class that taught her about how its okay to do sports. She didn't have an art teacher that let her spray paint the walls or a group of girls that believed in her as much as I got to have.
I really wish I could tell every girl at my school about what it means to be a girl and how they can be engineers and doctors and scientists or anything else they set their heart to. These girls didn't have a whole school based around really what a girl need in a education. They haven't found their strong LJA scholar, and that makes me think what I could do to help.I have to create a personal project next year and I’m going to do a project about what it means to be a girl in the world. I am going to go even beyond that. When I grow up I would like to become a woman activist or a mentor to young women. LJA has inspired me to learn and help others even after high school. Everyday I am thankful for Laura Jeffrey and all it has taught me. So from the bottom of my heart, thank you. If there is ever anything I can do to help out please just call me up! Anything I can do to give back to the place that has given me strength as a woman! Thank you!!!!!!
My name’s Izzy Rousmaniere. I was part of the 2012 graduating class of Laura Jeffrey Academy. I walked through those doors on the first day they ever opened, and I walked out four years later immensely proud and grateful for the things I’d learned, the community I’d gained, and the person I’d become. In my time at LJA, I didn’t just learn about math and science and English and art, but I also learned a lot about being a citizen of the world. I loved the conversations we had, in class and after school and during lunch, with or without teachers or structure. At LJA, I learned to discuss and debate and think critically. We talked about race and prejudice, gender roles, and the ways complex identity dynamics impact our lives. Our teachers were never afraid of controversial or difficult subjects. They never condescended to us or simplified topics just because we weren’t old enough to drink, vote, or drive. They had confidence we could handle it. I am so grateful for that. Because by believing in us as smart and capable young people, they taught us to believe in ourselves. And that’s valuable, because young people, especially girls, rarely have our capabilities affirmed.
That said, being an LJA grad has definitely made small talk difficult. A major bonding topic for people my age is how everybody—universally—hated middle school. I can’t participate in those discussions because I don’t know what that feels like. I loved my community. I loved the things I was learning.
Granted, towards eighth grade, though, I did become frustrated with the school, because we never learned anything from the white male side of things, like they did in other schools, like I would invariably have to in high school, and I just didn’t feel prepared.
I was way prepared, not just material-wise but also in how I could think. I knew how to be an active learner and a critical thinker. And two months into freshman year, I was so sick of the white male side of things.
At LJA I learned about the role gender plays in my life as a young woman growing up in the 21stcentury. From age ten, I participated in discussions about issues facing girls and women today. I got to learn how women play a role in history and science and engineering and politics. Every day, I was newly inspired by someone to change something about the world.
Since leaving LJA, I’ve noticed how girls in so many of my classes just sit back and stay quiet, how they don’t answer questions or participate actively. I am grateful that LJA helped me avoid that trap, and instead pushed me to notice it, and to become a smarter, stronger, and more independent young woman.
I spent last fall in a semester program studying ethics and global leadership in Washington, D.C. with other high school students from around the country. I know that I would not have had the courage, knowledge, or maturity to do that if it hadn’t been for LJA. In this program, we had opportunities to discuss complex global policy issues with diplomats, presidential speechwriters, and former chiefs of staff. All of us were motivated students—all of us had diverse and important and insightful comments and questions—but the boys consistently spoke up more. They tended to sit up front, to ask more questions and take more initiative with our speakers. I saw this pattern immediately, and out of 24 students, the only other person who noticed it went to an all-girls prep school in Massachusetts. The two of us were able to consciously counter this pattern because we noticed it. We countered the pattern by asking questions, by pointing it out so all of us were aware; encouraging other girls to accept their ideas and insights as worth hearing and worth saying, because society often tells us that they aren’t. LJA taught me how to be a leader.
This is a school that’s strongly attached to its values and principles, and, as cheesy as I thought they were when I was 12, those values inform my life today. From fifth grade, I was taught empathy, generosity of spirit, and the positive power of vulnerability. LJA—the infamous middle school—was a safe place for me to be passionate and creative. That’s incredible. I sometimes don’t quite realize how incredible that is.
I don’t know who I would be without LJA. It was a safe, comfortable, and empowering place to develop my identity and grow into myself as a young woman. It gave me a love of learning, some of the closest friendships I have, countless mentors, and a motivation and confidence to change the world.